JEFFERSON COUNTY, Mo. (KMOV.com) -- A Jefferson County man was fatally shot by bow and arrow last week and police said they are investigating a claim of self-defense.

According to the family's attorney, the boy was walking to a tree stand on Sept. 17 while carrying a bow and arrows in the 100 block of Valley Springs Road to hunt deer. While walking, he spotted Michael Stotts, 40, of Dittmer, who was trying to steal a lawn tractor and a wood splitter.

The boy called his father who showed up at the property and confronted Stotts. During the confrontation, he reportedly ran towards the boy. The attorney said the boy warned Stotts multiple times to stop because he was in fear of his life. He released an arrow, striking and killing him at the scene.

The juvenile was not taken into custody, the sheriff's office said.

According to the sheriff's office, the property has been the site of several recent thefts.

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